Seller of Indian $4 Smartphone Accused of Fraud

Recently an Indian company revealed that they would be selling a smartphone for only $4, however, 30,000 unit sales later, it has turned out that it may just be too good to be true. The company has been accused of fraud by congressman Pramod Tiwari, with another MP, Kirit Somaiya calling the operation a huge Ponzi scam and requested the government launch an investigation into the company. This is hardly the first trouble for the $4 smartphone too, with an early prototype of the device being uncovered as a phone belonging to another company as well as being subject to a government raid making the device seem less and less of a reality.

Set to be launched by a small company named Ringing Bells, the $4 Freedom 251 device originally impressed many by packing a decent set of specifications for the price. A 1.3 GHz quad-core processor, 1,450 mAh battery, 4-inch 960 x 540 qHD display, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage and a 3.2-megapixel camera was what it was capable of on paper, far from the expensive flagship phones launched by big companies, but for 251 rupees, it seemed incredible. Pankaj Mohindroo, the founder and president of the Indian Cellular Association told CNN that the sum cost of the Freedom 251’s components, even when using the cheapest possible, would cost at least 2700 rupees ($40) to manufacture. The device’s 3.5-inch touchscreen alone would cost more than the $4 that the entire device was to sell for.

Adding to this, at the launch event for the phone, the sample handsets given out by Ringing Bells looked nothing like the previous renders of the phone, which were later revealed to be Chinese Adcom Ikon 4 phones with the branding covered up. Ringing Bells founders Mohit Goel and Ashok Chanda claimed that the branding was present on the devices as the screen components had been sourced from Adcom and the device was a quickly put together prototype to show off.

It doesn’t stop there either, with Ringing Bells having faced a government raid on one of its offices due its lack of credentials and attempting to market a device without having a Bureau of Indian Standards certification. Ringing Bells hadn’t even begun manufacturing the phones by the time they were selling them, with the money raised from pre-orders to be put towards purchasing the manufacturing unit to create them. The final falsehood from the company is their participation in the government run Make in India program, which they were proud to be a part of. Except they were planning to make the devices in India with no subsidies and the Indian Government confirming that the company had nothing to do with the program.

With so many deceptions and inconsistencies floating around, it is hard to consider that this device could really materialize. Even now Ringing Bells has stopped taking orders for the device, reportedly to work on creating the phones already ordered. Whether those who have ordered their devices ever see them materialize, it is hard to tell, but with the release date for the handset targetted for June, we may not have to wait too long.

TMZ Falls Victim to Malvertising Campaign

Malicious online activity in the form of hacks, malware and viruses have seen an exponential increase over the past 5 years, the rise in the number of consumers online coupled with a lax understanding concerning the dangers of the many cyber threats has led to more and more victims. Malvertising is one such example of how online advertisements could be hijacked and used to spread Malware through Malicious ads.

This technique has now found a new victim after online gossip site TMZ was found to be harbouring malicious online advertisements. For those who are unfamiliar with the site, TMZ is a hugely popular website that features expose, gossip and general breaking news concerning the world of celeb, the site pulls in over 30 million visitors a month and is a major attraction for online revenue, below is a summary of the attack.

It has been observed that the attack has the same ad chain pattern; this is from “ContextWeb (PulsePoint) to Smarty Ads and eventually various rogue advertisers”. The latter is leveraging CloudFlare’s infrastructure with the aim of hiding the servers location as well as encrypting the advertisement delivery to consumers via the website.

 

 

The malicious ad is pretty cheap to deliver when you consider it costs “$0.19 (£0.12) for one thousand user impressions (CPM)” 

These attacks are designed to be as cheap as possible with the aim of targeting high impact traffic targets, on a side note, many websites try to discourage users from using popular ad blockers when accessing their sites, perhaps malicious advertisements leading to exploit kits is not the best deterrent.

Images courtesy of malwarebytes and nickcannon

Razer Offers 50% Off For One Day Only

These days you can’t just play a game, you must have everything to play it. From your mobile phone being turned into a Gameboy to remote controlling a tank with a PS4 controller, the consoles don’t always take the highlight. Events like CES bring together companies from all over the technology industry came together and they notice how much you care. Razer wants’ to thank everyone, by offering you 50% off for one day only.

At CES, Razer was awarded the Best of CES People’s Choice award, something that apparently has not happened before in the 49 years since CES started. To thank everyone, they’ve decided that on the 15th of January a special deal will be open to offering 50% of all their peripherals.

In order to claim this deal you will need two things, firstly you will need a Razer Insider account. Secondly, you will need to have linked the Insider account to your Razer ID. Guidelines on how to do all this can be found here, as well as the link you need to retrieve your code to activate the discount.

It should be noted that this discount is only available on peripherals and accessories, so no buying a giant Razer system for 50% off. The worst part of this deal can be found in the terms and conditions, though:

  • Each customer/shipping destination is allowed to place only one (1) order with a maximum of one (1) item.
  • Only the first order from each customer/shipping destination will be accepted and any subsequent orders will be cancelled. In addition, Razer reserves the sole and absolute discretion to cancel any orders that exceed the limit stated above. Razer shall not be liable to any customer in relation to such cancellations.

With the offer running from the 15th at 9 am GMT to the 16th at 8.59am people in Europe will have some nice Friday night shopping to look ahead of them. Don’t worry if you’re in another region, though, as the deals are available in for customers located in North America/Asia-Pacific, for more details and how to redeem this deal check out the page here.

Someone Found an Infinite Caps Glitch in Fallout 4

I’m not one to cheat in my games, I like the immersion and level of effort required to get somewhere and do certain things within the world. However, if you’re not like me and you want to struggle to carry your bottlecap filled pockets around the wasteland with you, here’s how you can get all the caps you could ever want.

  • First, find a vendor who sells ammo. Any ammo will do.
  • Pick an ammo type.
  • Buy every single bullet of that ammo type.
  • Sell exactly one ammo of the stash you just bought back.
  • Sell another chunk of the ammo, but not all of it.

It should be noted that the glitch doesn’t seem to work with every vendor, and you can only take as much money as each vendor has at that time, but if you’re tired of only being able to afford cruddy hardware, it’s a quick workaround…. you cheating scumbag (joking).

It’s actually quite a simple glitch to say the least and one that I suspect that the team at Bethesda will patch in the not too distant future. Of course, with more pressing issues such as the FPS bug, I can’t see this one being a top priority.

Cheap Electric Car? Lose The Steering Wheel!

Electric cars are all the rage these days. With big companies like Tesla and even public transport like buses and shuttles in airports and between towns. So why do the public not take up electric cars if they are cheaper to run and better for the environment? Two big problems, first being that the batteries drain quickly and secondly the cost of the cars; one man hopes to have solved the second problem.

Mark Frohmayers came up with the idea eight years ago, the idea of creating an electric vehicle that would be great for a little runaround and would come in quite cheaply. With all the companies building large vehicles, Frohmayers saw a gap in the market where people could just afford a simple electric vehicle.

Arcimoto was born, a start-up for affordable electric vehicles, and has since shown off a few three-wheeled prototypes, but sadly over the eight years the company never quite felt happy with the overall goal. That was until now, with a car that meets all the criteria they set out, and it will cost less than $12,000 (£7772 approximately).

Their latest model, the SRK, ditches the steering wheel. The three-wheeled vehicle features two seats and the vehicle is officially classed as a motorcycle and features a range of 70 miles with speeds up to 85miles per hour. Only 105 inches long, the vehicle fits in small spaces and with the option to fully enclose the SRK (instead of the frame style protective shell).

Could you see yourself commuting to work on an SRK? Or would you need a little more distance and power? Could you ever see yourself getting a run around vehicle such as this or will you always want something to carry you and the family on holiday?

X2 Introduced NEXTYDE Mini-Tower

X2 is one of those companies who make a little bit of everything, keyboards, mice, and also cases and it is a new addition to the case line-up that they are presenting this time. The NEXTYDE is a sleek looking mini-tower chassis for the PC gamer that is looking for something smaller and perhaps more cost-effective solution. Keen eyes will quickly spot the resemblance to another a lot larger case on the market, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Inside the chassis, you will find plenty of room for mITX and up to ATX motherboards as well as full sized ATX power supplies. You can mount graphics cards with a length of up to 320mm and CPU coolers with a height of up to 170mm.

There is a bit of limitation when it comes to storage drives as you’re only able to build in two 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch HDDs or SSDs.

The chassis can generate a high airflow thanks to the two 120mm fans in the front, one 120mm fan at the rear and one 120mm at the top of the chassis. The front section also allows for a 240mm radiator to be mounted. You also get easy access to the rear of the motherboard for easy mounting of CPU coolers thanks to the large cut-out.

The front panel, or rather the top panel in this case, provides you with a single USB 3.0, one USB 3.0 and headset audio jacks. You’ll also find a fan controller for easy setup and adding that extra push of air when it’s needed.

 

The X2 NEXTYDE will be available in 3 versions, all matt black, glossy black, and white and should be available in Europe at the end of August. The MSRP is set to $44.95 USD and €39.95 Euro.

Great Offer From GIGABYTE on GA-Z97X-Gaming G1 in May

GIGABYTE is in a good mood and they want to give something back to their customers. To do this, they’ve launched a new campaign with an extra low price for their award winning G1 motherboard, the GA-Z97X-Gaming G1.

This motherboard already provided enough features and abilities to score the Bang for the Buck award here at eTeknix when it was released, and that statement is more valid than ever with the new campaign pricing. While stock lasts, you can grab this amazing motherboard for under £105,00 incl. VAT at participating retailers.

The GA-Z97X-Gaming G1 supports both 4th and 5th Generation Intel Core processors and up to 32GB DDR3 memory. It comes with onboard Creative Sound Core3D quad-core audio processor and AMP-UP Audio technology with exclusive upgradable OP-AMP, and Audio Noise Guard with LED path lighting. Dual DAC-UP USB ports, gold-plated display and audio ports, high-end Nichicon audio capacitors, Killer E2200 and Intel gaming networking, 4-way graphics support, and SATA Express support for 10 Gb/s data transfer. It is backed by a 4-year warranty and is built with Long lifespan Durable Black Solid caps.

It doesn’t really matter what your preferred online shop is, as it covers all the major UK sites. Aria, CCL, eBuyer, dabs, Scan, Novatech and my personal favourite Overclockers UK are all part of this deal. GIGABYTE’s GA-Z97X-Gaming G1 is an awesome motherboard for anyone planning to build a Z97 based setup and with a deal like this, the time might be now.

Tesla is Now Testing the Used Car Sales Market

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Electric Car giant Tesla has been making massive waves in the automotive and home electrical worlds recently. Firstly by introducing its spectacular Model S and more recently the home batteryThe battery technology is still brand new, but the cars are starting to age a little, with the oldest Model S around 2 1/2 years old.

What does this mean? The consumer turn around for prestige cars like this normally lasts around two – three years; they then trade in and purchase the newest model. So what about the older cars, surely they don’t just leave them rotting or flash the memory and sell as new do they? Of course not, those cars which have started coming back to the dealerships are now being sold through Teslas ‘Buy Pre-Owned‘ scheme.

Looking through the sales pages, the cheapest model to come up was a Model S 60 at a respectable $59,000. After looking for a comparable model, the cheapest Model S 85 was $62,350; when compared like for like to a new model, the price came in at almost $100,000, that’s a huge saving of almost $38,000. You also get 4 years/ 50,000 miles warranty and a delivery to your nearest dealership for up to $1,500.

Tesla can offer these low prices due to only selling through their own dealerships. The used car market is a lucrative place to be, you can sell a car for thousands over book price with the right selling pitch. Well done marketing at Tesla, if the price originally put you off; it seems it’s going in the right direction.

Xiaomi Tackles the Battery of Smartphones Head-on

Xiaomi is renowned for producing cheap technology. Hailing from China, the firm produces some amazing pieces while keeping a close eye on cost and functionality. In this case, Xiaomi have produced what could be claimed as an iPhone 5c clone, but better.

The Mi 4i hosts a 5″ 1080p LCD screen, an octo-core 64-bit Snapdragon 615, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, 13MP rear-facing camera, 5MP front-facing camera, dual SIM support and a massive 3,120mAh battery; oh wait, it also costs just $205 (Rs. 12,999).

Most of the tech giants seem to be fixated on offering the latest designs, Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge for example, or the slimmest designs and leave the battery to the very end; only fitting in what will fit over what it needs to run for a useful period of time. Take a look at the Samsung Galaxy S6, massive specification list, but a mere 2550mAh battery, seeing a little over 8 hours of conservative usage, but a step backwards from the Galaxy S5 with its beefier 2800mAh battery.

Xiaomi stated it “put considerable effort into fitting the highest battery capacity possible”, which is something all companies should aim to do early on. It measures in at a reasonable 7.8mm, not too far off the iPhone 6 7mm.

On the construction side of things, we are informed that it uses a plastic, wrap around case, but with a matt, soft-touch finish; cheap and cheerful for a $200 phone. The place where most manufacturers seem to claw the money back is on the screen, using cheap materials to get 1080p or lowering the quality to 720p. The Mi 4i seems to debunk the trend and use a reasonable 1080p sharp screen protected by Gorilla Glass.

Operation is powered by a custom skin of Android operating system, but unlike older devices, the Mi 4i uses Androids latest version 5.0 with a Xaiomi custom skin.

The phone will release in India at the end of April. Would you be interested in buying the Mi 4i or are you loyal to a certain phone brand? Let us know in the comments.

Thank you to ArsTechnica for providing this information

Cheap Electric Vehicles May Arrive on the Market Sooner than Expected

A recent analysis states that electric cars may soon be competing or even surpass gas cars on cost. This means that electric cars won’t be just a luxurious accessory for the few.

Manufacturers tend to keep the cost of lithium-ion batteries found in electric cars a strict secret, but a recent peer-reviewed study of more than 80 estimates reported between 2007 and 2014 suggests that the costs of battery packs are lower than assumed by energy-policy analysts.

The study suggests that batteries found in EV manufacturer cars such as Tesla and Nissan cost around $300 per KW/h in 2014. This estimate is much lower than the most optimistic projections published this year and even below the average projections published for 2020. The study also tells that the batteries could even reach $230 per KW/h by 2018.

People are also said to be more interested in EVs if the battery costs between $125 and $300 per KW/h. Having the battery cost be a quarter or even half of an EVs price tag, cheaper batteries would make the vehicle itself more cheaper. Alternatively, car manufacturers can maintain the current EV price tag, but offer a battery with much longer ranges instead.

The range factor on an EV is also a crucial thing for buyers, because it would be cheaper to fill an EV with electricity than a car running on gas. It is said that charging an EV with a 300 mile range would cost less than $10. Also, the study states that if batteries fall as low as $150 per KW/h, this may lead to “a potential paradigm shift in vehicle technology”.

The analyst report that the cost of battery packs is falling around 8% each year, which they say is likely to continue at this rate in the following years as well. However, Luis Munuera, an energy analyst for the International Energy Agency, and Pierpaolo Cazzola, a transport policy analyst for the same agency, tend to be sceptical about the peer-reviewed in question, but they do seem to agree about “events moving quicker than expected in lithium-ion battery technology”.

Thank you MIT Technology Review for providing us with this information

Microsoft Is Planning to Release $149 Laptops Running Windows 10

Microsoft is said to be working on delivering record low-priced laptops running Windows 10 which are due to launch this summer. The company is aiming for a $149 price tag for the cheap laptops, which are intended to target the educational markets.

The laptops are expected to feature a 11.6-inch display and be powered by Intel’s Atom Bay Trail-T CR SoC. Other specifics are not yet known, but rumours are that it will come with around 4GB of RAM, low-end SSD storage, Wi-Fi support, USB 2.0 (or possibly even 3.0) and other necessary features required for a laptop to function.

Elitegroup Computer Systems is said to take the centre stage in making one of the laptops and selling it through the educational channel which Intel and ECS built for their Classmate PC products. The final price for the laptop is stated to be $179.

Another Chinese-based PC maker is said to be planning on making consumer versions of ultra-low priced personal computers designed by Microsoft and selling it at around $149. The company is said that it will sell their product “via brand vendors”, but it is still unclear if the products will be China-based or would sell in different parts of the world as well.

Microsoft might also make this move as a response to Google and its attempt to dominate a significant share of the low-end PC market with its Chrome OS devices. However, the move might also backfire on Microsoft due to the fact that offering low-end PCs could degrade profit margins for its partners in the long run.

Thank you KitGuru for providing us with this information

Meet Elio – The £4,500 Car With Three Wheels

Many have attempted to produce low-cost and efficient forms of personal transport. We’ve seen innovative vehicles like Renault’s Twizy and more personal solutions like the Segway. One new American company believes it has the solution at this year’s CES.

The Elio is a new car-type vehicle, that has three wheels and a very small engine. It is a car though, one safe for road use and one that does 84 miles per gallon.

Yes, gallon. Of fuel. This vehicle is not electric, as many of these things are. It seems that the desginers of the Elio have simply aimed for low cost of manufacture rather than cost of fuel, however it looks like that they’ve attempted to offset that by utilising such a small engine and weight of the overall vehicle.

The car is sort of in production, but there’s a waiting list, with distinctions between refundable and non-refunable deposits towards the car. Those who place a non-refundable deposit get place higher on the waiting list, but with a risk of course.

Source: The Verge

 

Currys and PC World to Join in With Black Friday Sales

UK electrical retailers Currys and PC World (both owned by Dixons Retail) will be participating in the American “phenomenon” of the Black Friday sales.

“The Black Friday shopping deal phenomenon began in the US. It’s always the Friday after Thanksgiving Day and is seen as the kickoff for the shopping season leading up to Christmas. Shops open early and there are big savings online and in-store in time-limited deals – it’s the perfect time to get your Christmas shopping started. It’s also followed by Cyber Monday, another day of big online discounts.”

The thing is, Thanksgiving isn’t celebrated in the UK, so why do the retailers feel the need to push this “phenomenon” upon us?

Let’s just hope we don’t see the same scenes as last year when Asda decided to join in with Black Friday –

Besides all of that, some of you may well find some great deals on tech next week, that’s if you can get past the hordes of parents fighting over incredibly cheap PS4s.

Source: Currys

 

Amazon One Day Tech Sales Spotted

Who doesn’t like making a massive saving on tech? Online retail giant Amazon has just unleashed their one day technology sale to the public, valid for only the 20th of November, 2014.

Unfortunately, no motherboards are included in this offer, but there are heavy discounts made across CPUs, power supplies, hard drives, peripherals and selected accessories. There isn’t quite enough to build a whole computer, but it will put you ahead of the retail pricing race for sure.

The most interestingly discounted products include Intel’s i7-4970 Processor for $249.99, 50% off Seagate 2TB hard drives and $140 off Thrustmaster’s Warthog Joystick. As you can see there isn’t a plethora of products available, most likely due to their heavily discounted nature, but there may be something there to tickle your fancy.

The sale is available for only 24 hours and is running out soon, so if you want in on the goods you must hurry.

Image courtesy of Gaming Union

China Apple Store Randomly Dominated by 1 Yuan Applications

$0.16 US, £0.10 GBP, $0.19 AUD or 1 yuan isn’t rather large amount of money – but it seems to be just enough for these app developers.

As ITHome reported, one morning they woke up and all of a sudden a ton of applications we’re listed at the low price of 1 yuan. There has been no official release from Apple as to why this change has been put into place, but it is rumored that it is to draw more ‘genuine’ users – seeing many previously free apps adopt the 1 yuan strategy along some big name offerings.

Some reports claim that this 1 yuan (3 yuan for some applications, too) implementation may succeed in fostering more genuine users, with less bot downloads – but may also draw people toward jail-breaking their phones in order to install them for free either way. Only time will tell however as this is all a big guess.

Some large scale applications have also implemented the 1 yuan method, seeing games such as Plague Inc., Limbo, Fire of God Vegas: Prometheus Rising among many other well developed mobile platform games being listed for the almost-nothing price. This may mean mean that more ‘freemium’ models will be implemented – seeing users be able to purchase in game points, gold or experience for real life money, alongside seeing them sit through annoying ads unless they pay $5 US or so to have them removed permanently.

There have been no announced plans as to if this will be released to the Western world, nor an official release from Apple regarding the subject. We will continue to report as more information comes to light.

Images courtesy of ITHome and Mobiloud

Wal-Mart Duped Into Selling PS4s For Just $90

Just a few days ago we reported on Wal-Mart’s price matching scheme, with which they have decided to match the price of a number of retailers, including Amazon.

Well some customers have taken advantage of this already, scamming the retail giant into selling them PlayStation 4 consoles for an unbelievable $90. The customers in question exploited the fact that all you need to list an item on Amazon is a registered selling account, which allows you to list practically anything you like on the site at any price. Presumably the customers listed the PS4 as sold out so they didn’t end up receiving any real requests from people wanting to buy one.

Once they had that account and the fake listing, all a customer needed to do was display a screenshot of the webpage to a cashier, ‘proving’ the lower price with which Wal-Mart promises to match.

“We’re committed to providing low prices every day, on everything. So if you find a current lower online price from an online retailer on an identical, in-stock product, tell us and we’ll match it.”

It’s not yet known how many have taken advantage of the scam, but we don’t doubt for a moment that  you won’t be able to take advantage of it for much longer.

Source: NBC News

Headless Ghost Fixes a Problem You Didn’t Know You Had

Don’t you just love it when someone fixes a problem that you didn’t even know you had, or at least most likely didn’t know about. A new Kickstarter campaign is set out to fix this problem with a very simple and cheap solution, the Headless Ghost display dummy.

The display-dummy plug simply emulates a high-resolution display so the system thinks that it is present, and thereby releasing the full potential of the hardware.

By using the Headless Ghost and simulating the presence of an attached display, you can use all of the power and available resolutions locked away inside your graphics hardware, which might otherwise be disabled when there is no screen available.

Just plug the dummy into your system in an available HDMI port and it will simulate a 4K display. The dummy will also work with DisplayPort and DVI adapters.

Many computer systems do not enable their GPU hardware when there isn’t any display attached; a well-documented issue amongst the Mac Mini and Intel HD graphics user bases.

Having a dummy plug like the Headless Ghost attached fully enables the GPU which allows for hardware-accelerated remote desktop access at high resolutions as well as fully utilizing the GPU hardware for GPGPU tasks such as crypto currency mining, rendering and simulations.

The thing I like most about this new dummy-adapter, next to its function of course, is the fact that it is manufactured in the UK. This isn’t some pride or fear thing, but with most Kickstarter campaigns I run into the trouble with shipping, import taxes and fees that in return makes the final-price two to three times bigger. With me being located in the EU, this won’t be an issue this time.

The Headless Ghost GPU dummy won’t cost you much to begin with as you can have one for just £10.00, that includes world-wide shipping. Early birds can get it for £8.00, but I doubt the £2 will make any difference for anyone who sees the benefit in this device.

There are multiple other pledges available where you get more units at discounted prices. The funding has almost reached its goal of £2.500 at the time of writing. Just £90 missing and there are 26 days to go.

I’ll do mine to help this project with my pledge as soon as I’m done writing this. This is just too cool a tool to not have.

Specification

  • Supports resolutions from 800×600 all the way up to 4096×2160 (4K!)
  • Operating system and software agnostic – works with Windows, OSX, Linux and just about anything else
  • Requires no drivers, configuration or power supply – just set it and forget it
  • Manufactured on black PCBs, with a gold corrosion resistant finish, in the UK
  • Appears as a headless ghost display in the OS graphics properties window for easy identification amongst other displays
  • Programming port – exposed programming pins on the board allow for new EDID data to be easily downloaded into the Ghost’s memory
  • Open source – design files for the Headless Ghost will be available after the Kickstarter has ended

Reward Tiers

  • £1 – Thank you! Every pledge counts and your name will go on the supporters list on the website
  • £8 – Early bird special! 1x Headless Ghost, free shipping worldwide at a reduced cost for the first 20 backers!
  • £10 – 1x Headless Ghost, free shipping worldwide
  • £15 – 1x Headless Ghost with a custom display identifier, free shipping worldwide (limited 50)
  • £17 – 1x Headless Ghost with limited edition Kickstarter case, free shipping worldwide (limited 20)
  • £19 – 2x Headless Ghosts, free shipping worldwide
  • £48 – GPGPU pack – 5x Headless Ghosts. Great for rigs with multiple GPUs being used for high-performance computing, free shipping worldwide
  • £97 – Server farm pack – 10x Headless Ghosts. Great for taking care of lots of machines e.g. a rack of Mac Mini Servers, free shipping worldwide

After this initial run of the Headless Ghost, they will sell for £12 a unit plus shipping. Campaign backers will also have access to two special editions of the Headless Ghost. 50 will be made with custom display identifiers, so they will show up as whatever you like in the operating system and 20 Headless Ghosts will be made with a limited edition Kickstarter case.

Thanks to Kickstarter for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Kickstarter

iGuardian Promises Business-Grade Security for Home Users

The news headlines are full of stories about hacked computers and data breaches, a thing that is starting to concern the users around the world quite a bit. Antivirus technology is a dead end, the companies who create the software say so themselves, so where does that leave the average consumer? Companies have access to a lot of security hardware designed for their network, the rest of us don’t. A new Kickstarter project aims to provide the worrying users with a cheap and easy to use solution.

The iGuardian is born. a Plug and play, zero configuration, Internet protection system, designed specifically for home use. The kickstarter goal of $125 thousand has been passed a while ago and as of writing it has almost $150 thousand in backed pledges, and still 5 days to go. There is no doubt that there is a market for this device, so we can only hope that the after-match of the campaign will run smoothly.

Thirty early birds were able to snag up the iGuardian for just $99, but the rest of us will have to pay $149 plus shipping if we want one. This is still a great price when you compare to other products on the market for this function, they easily cost $1000 and above, and require quite a bit of knowledge on your side to set up. Not so with the iGuardian.

The iGuardian is a device that’s slightly larger than a pack of gum and connects to your network before any other device. It then monitors the data going in and out from connected devices using the most recent security protocols and with the ability to be updated as necessary. The iGuardian serves as an Internet doorman of sorts, keeping an eye out for threats and denying them any kind of access whatsoever.

It is easier to set up than any kind of software firewall, just needing to be plugged into the same network that others are plugged into. From there, iGuardian can protect not only computers, but smart home appliances, smartphones, and any other products connected to the network

Itus Networks, creator of the iGuardian, lament in their video the lack of home network security on the level of effectiveness that businesses utilize regularly. With the attitude of any engineer, Itus set out to bridge that gap and give individuals reliable digital security that doesn’t get in the way, explaining how the iGuardian works along the way.

The hardware specification variate between the prototype and the target version, but if the prototype can do it, so can the final version too as it has upgrades in every way. The prototype uses two 600MHz ARM11 CPU’s, 512MB RAM, 32MB Flash, 2x Gigabit Ethernet Interfaces, one RJ45 Console and a 8GB MicroSD Card.

The final version on the other hand will have a lot more power with two 1.0 GHz MIPS64 CPU’s, 1Gb DDR3 RAM, three Gigabit Ethernet Interfaces, one RJ45 Serial Console, 64MB Flash, SD Card Slot.

[youtube width=”800″ height=”500″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8r6E7ZXgWY[/youtube]

Thank you Kickstarter for providing us with this information

Images and video courtesy of Kickstarter.

Humble Jumbo Bundle 2 Includes Terraria and Age of Empires Legacy

Another Humble bundle has just gone up and this time its “Humble Jumbo Bundle 2”.

Humble bundles are packs of games that you can buy for as much or as little as you want to pay. In this bundle you can get:  The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing, Deadlight  and Galactic Civilizations II: Ultimate Edition  for as little as a penny,  if you want steam versions then its a $1 minimum.

If you pay more than the average you can also get: Terraria, The King of Fighters XIII Steam Edition and Crusader Kings II (plus 3 DLC packs) as well as the above titles.

If you pay more than $15 you get all the above plus Age of Empires Legacy Bundle. You can decide where the money goes, it can go to the American Red Cross Charity and Child’s play charity, to the developers or to Humble. You can customize exactly how you want to split the payment too! This is a great way to try games that you wouldn’t usually buy and also to bulk up your steam library.

If you bought all these titles separately it would cost you $210 so you can really make a great saving. Games are usually added throughout the 2 weeks the bundles are available for and you automatically gain the extra games.

To grab any of the above games for your collection click Here

Smartphone AMOLED Panels Said to be Cheaper than LCD in Two Years

LCD panels have been previously used in smartphones and are still being used in most smartphones today. However, the newest display technology on the market is the AMOLED panel, used in smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S5 or Note 3, providing improved image quality, but at a much higher price than the LCD panels.

Manufacturers still use the LCD panels in order to bring smartphones at a much cheaper price, having the AMOLED panel’s price at 10-20% higher than the LCD. In an example, it is said that a 5-inch 1080 x 1920 pixels AMOLED panel is said to be 16% more expensive than the LCD counterpart. The good news is that as time passes, new technology becomes more demanding and prices drop. This is said to be the case for the AMOLED panel as well, having said that it will even out or be even cheaper than a LCD panel within two years.

“Until recently there have been few breakthroughs in the production of AMOLED displays, and the OLED industry seemed to be facing hard times,” said DisplaySearch’s Jimmy Kim. “If AMOLED costs fall below LCDs, as expected, it would lead to more opportunities for the OLED display industry, greater competition with LCD, and more choices for consumers.”

It is said that AMOLED production has recently started in China as well as Korea, with expectations for higher demand in the near future. Also, Korean manufacturer, Samsung, is said to have made significant achievements with its Quad HD 1440 x 2560 pixels screen by improving its grayscale and color accuracy, along with its brightness.

Thank you Phonearena for providing us with this information

Kickstarter Project Leads To Word’s Cheapest 3D Printer Tagged at Under $200

The 3D printer hype has not burt out yet, and yes, the 3D revolution is still making substantial progress. The problem was that, unlike the LEGO version, no 3D printer was cheap enough for everyone to afford. The solution however may have presented itself.

A Kickstarter project claimed the title of the world’s cheapest 3D printer. The printer is called QU-DB, short for Quintessential Universal Building Device, and it costs only $199. Initially, the project started with a target of raising $9,000 in order to get the company up and running smoothly. Surprisingly, the project received more than expected.

With over 1,400 backers, the QU-DB raised over $400,000 in the crowd-funding campaign and has even made a few other versions of the 3D printer kit. Currently, the small company based in Little Rock, Arkansas, is dealing with shipping the printers to the crowd-funding backers while preparing to take new orders and hopefully start delivering them next month.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHWldIz86oM[/youtube]

The company stated that the key for keeping the price down is that the printer comes unassembled. This is not a huge drawback and moreover, it also makes room for modifications of the basic unit, including a heated bed, increased production area and the addition of ‘pretty bright colors’ to the frame.

This is quite a big step in a fairly small amount of time to go from a family owned company to a manufacturer of a low-cost, ready-to-assemble home 3D printer company. However, 3D printer enthusiasts might be overjoyed over the fact that they can now own their own personal 3D printer for as low as $199.

Thank you GizMag for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of GizMag

New Virtual Reality Gear Surfaces in Europe

For the virtual reality fans out there Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus are the most well-known VR projects considered and eagerly awaited, but there are a couple of flaws to be considered when looking into this. First is the price, where Oculus Rift development kit would cost around $350, as much as a decent graphics card on the market. And the second, as any graphics card, it will end up being obsolete at a certain point, where another version of it needs to be bought in order to keep up with games and features.

However, an alternative just surfaced in Europe, and it looks quite promising too. The VR gadget’s name is Virzzmo and it has been the idea of Future Reality Games’ CEO, Dariusz Żołna. The gadget is currently used with handsets having a screen size of 4.7-inches or larger, and compared to Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus, it will not become obsolete. By changing the handset, it automatically change the gadget’s specs as well.

The principle of this gadget works by separating the handset’s display into two distinct sections, one for the left eye and one for the right. Along with the specially designed lenses, the gadget works out the stereoscopic 3D image which you can see while looking at the screen through it. In addition to the latter, Virzzmo presents a gyroscope inside which tracks head movement, making it the best multimedia gadget for your handset of all times.

In terms of pricing, the gadget is said to be really cheap, having been said to cost no more than €50. However, development kits are said to be released somewhere in June, therefore a customer release date is not known at this point. Also, the main question to be asked here is whether or not developers will take an interest in this project.

Thank you TweakTown for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of TweakTown

Are cheap tablets worth it?

Just a short time ago there was no such thing as a bargain tablet – at least no such thing as a bargain tablet that was worth buying.

Over the last year or so there has been a rapid move towards manufacturers making much cheaper tablets available. No longer do we have to fork out for an iPad if we want the convenience and ease of use of a tablet – but are any of the cheap ones any good?

Here’s a quick rundown of just some that are available in 2013 and going into 2014.

What should you look out for?

With a cheap tablet you obviously won’t have anywhere near the same kind of spec and performance as you can expect from an iPad 4, and this needs to be taken into account. If you’re spending less than £200 then it will be affected in terms of performance.

However, you need to keep an eye on storage and screen size, how powerful its processor is, how long the battery is likely to last and its dimensions. Pretty much all of the cheap tablets come with Android, meaning you will be reliant on Google Play. However, this is no bad thing as there are loads of apps available and plenty of games to choose from.

One of the most popular games played on tablets and handheld devices now are online casinos and gambling sites, whether that’s bingo or a more traditional online casino that offers online poker and roulette or games like reel thunder – all of these will be playable on a cheap tablet as well as the more expensive versions.

Some cheap and cheerful options

The GoClever Tab R974 is around £179 and although it does show its bargain basement credentials in terms of its build quality and screen resolution, it has a really impressive set of features and its performance is good and reliable. It’s a 10 inch tablet and if that’s what you’re after then you could definitely do worse than this one.

Even cheaper is the Barnes & Noble Nook HD which can be picked up for around £159. At that price it’s an absolute bargain and offers a really easy to use tablet at an almost unbeatable price. It’s simple and basic but it works and it looks good – a really good choice.

One of the very cheapest available is the Tesco Hudl that comes in at around £119. It has a really pleasing design and works far better than you’d expect given its price tag. It has a very nice quality seven inch screen, a Micro HDMI port and a microSD card slot.